I recently had a conversation with a gentleman while sitting in a mechanic's waiting room while they finished up my car. When he learned what I did for a living, he informed me that he was just waiting for the final settlement on his workman's compensation claim and then he would apply for disability. When asked, he revealed he had been out of work for almost two years while waiting for his work comp to come through! Two years that he could potentially have been receiving disability benefits. Due to Social Security rules and regulations limiting back pay based on the date of initial application, he likely had already lost nearly one year's worth of potential benefits.
There is never a reason to wait to file a claim for disability benefits. If a person finds themselves in a position where they are unable to work due to an injury or severe symptoms from a chronic condition or illness they should file an application. The longer one waits to file, the more complications that may arise regarding eligibility and being able to get all potential benefits to which one might be entitled. If the applicant finds that they recover from their condition and are able to return to work, but have been out of work more than one year, that applicant may be entitled to a closed period of benefits covering that year. If the applicant is out of work less than one year, the application can simply be withdrawn without penalty.